Classroom CommentaryChemical Phenomena in Everyday Life: An Adventure in Writing Across the Curriculum
This article describes a year-long writing project in an upper-level chemistry course that culminates in a Writing Marathon field trip to New York City. The goal of the project was to use student writing about chemical phenomena observed in daily life to make connections to the concepts discussed in class. The author shares that her students enjoyed exploring the city and examining it through their chemistry lens. She found it even more rewarding to watch them apply their knowledge to explain the phenomena around them.
Lessons by teachers with their inspiration for the activity or tips for how to implement the lesson.
In this article, the author discusses the common objectives of early weeks in first-year high school chemistry, such as safe lab attitudes and techniques, learning SI measurements, and communicating data and conclusions. The lab investigation highlighted in this article can be used to begin achieving all these objectives in an engaging and fun chemical reaction using a heating source with a reduced carbon footprint. The data developed gives an excellent opportunity for students to practice writing results and conclusions in the “claim, evidence, logical connection” manner taught in many secondary schools.
Reflections and perspectives by teachers about topics that affect chemistry education.
In this article, a Canadian author shares about her experience teaching chemistry in French Immersion, a program aimed at promoting bilingualism in French and English, the country’s two official languages. As she describes, both teaching and learning chemistry en français can be especially difficult, presenting unique challenges. She discusses her experiences as a classroom teacher, extra considerations required to support students in this setting, and the strategies she uses to expand students’ communication skills en français in the context of chimie.
A previously published article from Chemistry Solutions that is particularly relevant to readers.
Nuts & BoltsDrawing Exit Tickets: A New Way to Formatively Assess
The author uses a modified version of traditional exit tickets as a useful strategy to formatively assess student understanding at the end of the lesson. Her students are asked to summarize what they have learned by creating drawings. She shares that recent research has shown that drawing can be more effective than writing as a tool for remembering concepts. Read this article to see how you can use this strategy in your own classroom!
Classroom CommentaryAn Opportunity to Get Involved!
My Connection to the U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad Program
Read about one veteran chemistry teacher’s 25-year experience with the U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad Program (USNCO). He shares his experience, insight, and an overview of the wonderful program. If you’ve ever thought about getting yourself or your students involved, now is your chance to learn more!
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AACT President-Elect Michael Farabaugh reflects on his journey building a professional learning community throughout his career. He provides insight to both online and in-person opportunities, and shares about some of his most impactful experiences. He encourages teachers to get involved and make connections through a variety of resources.
In this animation, students will be introduced to the importance of including units to communicate the value of measurements effectively. The animation presents definitions, units of measurement, and measuring tools for physical properties that are commonly measured or calculated in chemistry class: mass, length, temperature, volume, amount (moles), and density. **This video has no audio**
In this activity, students will review a series of fundamental chemistry questions and select the answer from two choices provided. Upon completion, the sum of all the correct answers will equal the number of grams in one pound. Students can then use dimensional analysis to determine the number of grams in one pound for comparison.